l don’t know a lot about the sport of pole vaulting, but I do know one thing — having a pole to vault with is the first step toward victory. A college athlete claims Delta Air Lines cost her an All-American title by losing her poles, for which she’d paid $200 in oversize baggage fees to check on her flight.
Kati, a college student in Washington, tells KATU.com she blames the airline for robbing her of her third All-American title on Friday, because they sent her poles to Atlanta instead of Colorado Springs, Colo.
She checked in last Tuesday at Sea-Tac airport, paying the $200 in oversize baggage fees. But when she arrived at the airport upon landing — no poles. She says she spent four days calling Delta in the hopes that the poles would arrive in time for Friday’s competition.
“The most frustrating part, I think, for me, was I just kept getting the run-around,” she says. “I was talking, I was calling automated phone numbers that were hanging up on me or talking to people who didn’t know, or they would tell me one thing and something would be different.”
Finally, Delta told her the poles would be in Denver on Friday, two hours away, so two of her coaches set out to drive there. They got stuck in traffic, leaving her at the meet without her equipment or her coaches. She borrowed a pole, but it was too short.
“I needed my coach, and I needed my poles, so it was frustrating for sure,” she said.
In the end, Delta refunded her $200, but there’s no way to return the chance to win.